When Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl shipped out to Afghanistan, he could have had no idea what would befall him. After being captured by the Taliban in June of 2009, Bowe spent an arduous five years in captivity. Until his release was announced on May 31, 2014, he was the last known American POW. Sources differ on how Bowe was captured, but the simple fact is that he was taken and held for five years.
Stateside, other situations were developing. Bowe's captors released messages from him to his family and girlfriend, Monica Lee. In his last dispatch, Bowe told Monica not to wait for him. Monica was just 19 when her boyfriend was captured by the Taliban. Monica's mother Allison told the Daily Mail, "She was told to go on with her life, but she waited a long time." Mrs. Lee went on to say, "It's been pretty emotionally draining and she's had her ups and downs. The sheer loneliness has been pretty tough on her. Emotionally, it was very trying for her. She was 19 going on 20 at the time. It was a lot more than most people have to deal with. She's learned a lot to be quiet about how she feels but she has always been very supportive of Bowe, and very anxious about him."
But Monica was eventually able to move on. In 2012, she began dating her current boyfriend, Justin Forsdick. Monica has remained supportive of Bowe and his family. It is a situation as triumphant as it is tragic; Bowe has had five years of his life stolen, and Monica is caught somewhere between her past and her present.
According to her mother, Monica's first words upon learning that her former flame was coming home were, "What do I do now?" Anyone in Monica's situation would be understandably confused and conflicted. However, Monica is also reportedly overjoyed that Bowe has been freed and is coming home.
Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl.